Tuesday, January 31, 2006

I'm the Iguana-Mama

Those of you who have read my blog for awhile, may remember my talking about our trip to Mexico last spring and our Iguana invasion. In short, they were EVERYWHERE we looked, and my son even this picture taken with one.


Well, I am now officially becoming an iguana expert. My son's school has a field trip to its' Science Resource Center. And, I volunteered to help out. What I didn't know was, this means I will be leading the iguana discussion with the kids in my area. But, when I saw the choice of mammals, snakes, museum guides or iguanas, well naturally I took the iguana one. I mean, c'mon..who wouldn't, right?

I just spent two hours listening to a lady who was entirely too enthusiastic about iguanas. It was a little disturbing, but also amazing that she knows all that she does. So, for you today, something you may have never expected to read about on this blog:

5 Random Facts You Never Wanted to Know about Iguanas

1. Third Eye, NOT So Blind. Iguanas have a membrane on top of their head that acts as a third eye. Because of this third eye, they do not have to move at all to see anything above them. Damn, I wish I had a third eye sometimes around here. But, my kids are probably thankful that I do not!

2. WHEN A PROBLEM COMES ALONG, THEY MUST WHIP IT! Iguanas have such powerful tails that they can seriously injure an attacker with just one whip. However, while they are young, it is possible for them to "lose" their tails when they are frightened or trying to escape from something. The new tail grows back quickly, but is never as brilliant as the first tail color was.

3. Feelin' Hot, Hot, Hot! As much as I whine about being able to wear shorts in mid-January here, Houston is really not even warm enough for the cold-blooded iguana. These amphibians really need to live in areas that stay 90 degrees or so year-round.

4. JAWS Ain't Got Nuthin...There is one area of Texas usually warm enough for the iguanas to live, near the Southern most border of the state. However, most iguanas there will still take a dive and SWIM all the way back to their home of Mexico. They are expert swimmer and can swim that long of a distance easily. Makes you think twice about going for a dip in the Gulf, doesn't it?

5. Looky, But No Touchy. As it turns out, my husband and I made a huge mistake getting the picture of my son holding a huge iguana. And, when I think about the little girls who got pictures in front of us with the reptile balanced on their head, I feel seriously queasy.

Around 90 percent of reptiles carry salmonella on their bodies at various points of their life. Apparently, some people let the iguanas roam their house freely as pets. The resource lab lady said this is really a no-no. Basically, this lets the iguana freely spread salmonella, feces and whatever else is on its scaly body all over your home. Let's say it all together now... EWWWwww!

Tomorrow, class, we'll cover the wonderful world of those never-say-die cockroaches...nature's very own "Terminator" insect. HA!

12 Comments:

Blogger Lisa said...

You get 2 Mommy Points today. 1 for volunteering to do anything at your kids school in the first place, and another point for actually listening and retaining the Iguana info.

I had no idea they swim from our Gulf back to Mexico! That's wild! We were in Mexico last summer and saw HUGE iguana's on the beach and now I wonder if they had just arrived.

I say, in my very Inspector Closeau voice: "That's vedy einteresssting!"

2:57 PM, January 31, 2006  
Blogger Shelli said...

It is so funny that you said that about salmonella because when I saw that picture of your son, I thought ewww, don't they know the iguana is covered in salmonella. I am a former pediatric nurse and have seen many a salmonella poisonings and one of the first questions is "Do you have any reptiles?"

3:37 PM, January 31, 2006  
Blogger WendyWings said...

That makes me feel squiffy just looking at the picture, I am glad you got educated today that is always a bonus of field trips LoL

4:37 PM, January 31, 2006  
Blogger Vanessa said...

Bleh and ewww...give me a dog or a cat or a fish, but no other animal for a pet. I'm getting creeped out just thinking about the salmonella and feces.

7:07 PM, January 31, 2006  
Blogger Suburban Turmoil said...

Hmmm. Very interesting. ;)

7:45 PM, January 31, 2006  
Blogger Barbara said...

Iguanas scare me. Because I've live in NY most of my life, I only see iguanas on vacation. I have no idea how friendly/unfriendly they are, andsome of them are big. They seem as ubiquitous as squirrels are here.

9:19 PM, January 31, 2006  
Blogger daysgoby said...

Does this mean you are a cat in lizard clothing?

The people at Geico may be interested.

10:58 PM, January 31, 2006  
Blogger Lazy Daisy said...

Wow, everything you ever wanted to know about Iguanas but were afraid to ask! You get my vote for room mother of the month!

11:16 PM, January 31, 2006  
Blogger Tyra said...

My son wants a lizard as a pet so badly but I've been told they are hard to keep as pets due to having to keep the temperature just right.

Have a great time on the field trip, I know you'll do great!

9:25 AM, February 01, 2006  
Blogger Lisa said...

very interesting info! However, I still think they are blecchy :-)

1:59 PM, February 01, 2006  
Blogger Running2Ks said...

I actually knew the salmonella one. But I am grateful for the facts--my kids were just asking about them.

I thought all moms had an eye in the back of the head ;)

Popping by to say hi!

8:00 PM, February 01, 2006  
Blogger d.challener roe said...

I can handle iguanas, but please let the cockroaches be a joke.

I love the header...Here via Michele's today.

9:18 PM, February 02, 2006  

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